An Ode to Tricare

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As a military family member, I’d have to say that the absolute best benefit that the government provides us with is TriCare health insurance.

I’ve had a scary week.  A few days ago I developed a severe pain to the left of my belly button.  Then my Braxton Hicks contractions kicked into overdrive and went from being uncomfortable to feeling like actual labor pains.

To some that might sound like something that’s explained away.  End of pregnancy paranoia.  But for me, there’s no such thing as pregnancy paranoia.  I’ve had 5 miscarriages, 2 D&C surgeries.  In my last full term pregnancy I developed a chorionic hematoma with a partial placental abruption.  I was put on bed rest and under constant surveillance to make sure my baby received the proper nutrients.

I’ve always had a ton to worry about when it comes to pregnancy.  From the moment the strip turns pink I’m under constant stress.  The one thing I’ve never had to worry about is medical bills.  I hear stories of people with health insurance that they pay monthly premiums for that still end up paying thousands for healthy pregnancies.  Thank goodness for that.

TriCare Gives Me One Less Thing to Worry About

Thanks to TriCare my medical issues haven’t added a financial burden on my family.  Active duty families don’t pay a monthly healthcare premium for their coverage.  That in itself is a savings of thousands of dollars every year.  I’ve used both private providers and military hospitals for my different pregnancies.  When I’ve had all of my care in a military hospital I didn’t pay one cent.  When I went through private providers I paid less than $100 for all of my prenatal care as well as my labor and delivery.

I Truly Believe That My Husband’s Service Pays for  TriCare

Part of me feels like it’s almost unfair how inexpensive our coverage is.  But then I remember we pay in other ways.  My younger son’s pregnancy didn’t cost me a dollar.  My husband deployed when I was 5 months pregnant.  I went to every doctor’s appointment on my own.  I listened to specialists tell me about all the things that could go wrong with my pregnancy by myself.  Worst of all, I delivered our son by myself.  I spent all day in a hospital room alone.  My mother came into town but I needed her to stay with my older son during my hospital stay.  I was fortunate enough to be able to Skype with my husband throughout the process.  While that was great, I would’ve rather had him there to hold my hand.  He didn’t get to hold his son until he was three months old.  Every feeding, every diaper change, every late night wake up was my responsibility.  My husband missed the first bath, the first pediatric appointment, so many firsts.  We paid with our memories.

The Military Provides My Family with so Much

I’m so grateful for TriCare.  With the stressful situations that our family is put in the last thing we’d need is to wonder how we’d be able to afford it all.  With all the craziness that’s swirled around this past week I never had to think about how much anything would cost me.

After all this time I’ve learned that our whole life is a trade-off.  Even our healthcare.  But I’ll say this… in this matter we’re well taken care of.

An Ode to TriCare

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18 thoughts on “An Ode to Tricare

  1. Medical issues should never be a burden to the family… Glad TriCare was able to provide the help you needed!

  2. Health insurance can be really tricky, I think it’s either really good or really bad and it’s rare to fine middle ground. You are truly lucky and I, so happy for you.

  3. This is very interesting because this system is so different from Israel. In Israel it’s mandatory to recruit (for men and women) and while you serve you have to use the army medical system which is not great lol (our health insurance is basically free but when you serve you can’t use it because you have to use the army’s one). I’m happy you’re satisfied with the way things work out in the usa 🙂

    1. Wow, that’s like the exact opposite of here! No free healthcare unless you serve in the military. Our health coverage is great and we can use either military hospitals or the private sector.

  4. You’re VERY lucky. I have the WORST health insurance and I am currently dealing with them in regards to being pregnant and man it’s stressing me out 🙁

    1. Some of my friends have received massive bills at the beginning of their pregnancy and they have to set up payment plans before they begin their prenatal care. That’s insane! So stressful, the exact opposite thing that you need during pregnancy.

  5. I’ve never thought about it in those terms, but you and your family definitely pay for your benefits in non-traditional ways. I’m glad the military helps you, though, and I thank your husband and your family for the sacrifice you have all made!

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